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 How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?

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UmJamLam
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PostSubject: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Thu Aug 23 2018, 00:17

So I've played a couple games against Tau at 2000 pts recently and lost both pretty decidedly. Literally the biggest obstacle I run into is shield drones. When my opponent is running lots of riptides, broadsides and commanders and I can't get to them because they have 12 sheild drones, I don't really know what to do. I tend to run the usual black heart ravager spearhead, 6 talos engines in a covens battalion and then a flayed skull batallion with 4 venoms (1 blaster in each). Has anyone played against this kind of list with DE and if so, how did you manage to actually kill anything important?
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AzraeI
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Thu Aug 23 2018, 00:30

Dissi canons and shooting the drone units with small arms fire first works wonders
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Kantalla
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Thu Aug 23 2018, 05:43

To clear shield drones you want lots of splinter fire.

For example, 12 shield drones would take 54 redirected splinter shots (if they are tanking them on the bigger models then that's a successful option too). That's four Venoms at rapid fire range plus some support from the Kabalites inside (or two turns outside rapid fire range).

If you don't have enough splinter fire then you will struggle to damage their important units like that.

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EmoberryCrunch
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Thu Aug 30 2018, 17:31

So you're going to have an uphill battle because you've invested in 6 Talos. That's a sizable chunk of your list, and while they have solid melee, their shooting is sub-par with BS4. Not to mention, everything in Tau has <FLY> except the Fire Warriors and the Cadre Fireblades (aka, the stuff you need to kill). Once your Talos make it to melee, if you don't flat out win, Tau will just leave. Are they fast enough to keep up? Maybe.

Other posters are correct, in that the best way to kill drones is with small arms fire. This is definitely easier said than done, but it's the right way.
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Lord Weston
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Tue Sep 18 2018, 21:02

I share your pain! Ran into a tau fire warrior wall yesterday. My biggest problem was I had brought the wrong guns really - didn't know i was going to be playing tau had brought haywire as my usual anti armour then discovered they do jack against suits. Despite a frankly abysmal performance with their guns I actually had quite a lot of success with the voidravens bomb run and can see how this would help against tau. You could potentially use them to target juicy units (etherals, fire blades etc) and pull in the suicide drones in the movement phase before shooting the other stuff
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TeenageAngst
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Tue Sep 18 2018, 21:48

Like most problems, I just throw birds at it. 24 Razorwing Flocks were the answer to both Tau lists I encountered at NOVA and they'll probably help here too. You can lose a solid half of your birds to shooting and overwatch and still have enough bases to tie half a gunline up.

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AzraeI
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Tue Sep 18 2018, 23:40

@TeenageAngst wrote:
Like most problems, I just throw birds at it. 24 Razorwing Flocks were the answer to both Tau lists I encountered at NOVA and they'll probably help here too. You can lose a solid half of your birds to shooting and overwatch and still have enough bases to tie half a gunline up.

i thought you quit your birds with the price doubling? what made you change your mind?
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TeenageAngst
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 00:09

@AzraeI wrote:
@TeenageAngst wrote:
Like most problems, I just throw birds at it. 24 Razorwing Flocks were the answer to both Tau lists I encountered at NOVA and they'll probably help here too. You can lose a solid half of your birds to shooting and overwatch and still have enough bases to tie half a gunline up.

i thought you quit your birds with the price doubling? what made you change your mind?

When they dropped 2 points and got access to stratagems.

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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 01:20

@TeenageAngst wrote:
@AzraeI wrote:
@TeenageAngst wrote:
Like most problems, I just throw birds at it. 24 Razorwing Flocks were the answer to both Tau lists I encountered at NOVA and they'll probably help here too. You can lose a solid half of your birds to shooting and overwatch and still have enough bases to tie half a gunline up.

i thought you quit your birds with the price doubling? what made you change your mind?

When they dropped 2 points and got access to stratagems.


Can you share some advice for them? Can't use any beast properly after the Codex
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TeenageAngst
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 01:42

I run 2 squads of 12 with a Beastmaster. Beastmaster obviously gets the +2 leadership drug. You fan them out wide for deployment with about 3-4 bases overlapping from each squad at the deployment line. Take advantage of LoS blocking terrain if it's there to use, but that's most of my deployments. Move them up 12" and try to duck into terrain if your opponent is far away. If they're within a reasonable charge distance, blow a CP on the Beastmaster for rerolls and roll the dice. If they're not, survive a round of shooting. Your goal in combat is to triangle a base with birds and try to touch as many units as you can to force them to fall back or otherwise be tied up in combat. If you opponent is turtling you can actually box flying units in like Riptides in against table corners with this.

That's enough to tie things up for your Talos and Grotesques to get into combat. Shoot things that are weakened or targets of opportunity with long range firepower, but the goal is to tie them up perpetually in combat.

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Cerve
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 07:21

@TeenageAngst wrote:
I run 2 squads of 12 with a Beastmaster. Beastmaster obviously gets the +2 leadership drug. You fan them out wide for deployment with about 3-4 bases overlapping from each squad at the deployment line. Take advantage of LoS blocking terrain if it's there to use, but that's most of my deployments. Move them up 12" and try to duck into terrain if your opponent is far away. If they're within a reasonable charge distance, blow a CP on the Beastmaster for rerolls and roll the dice. If they're not, survive a round of shooting. Your goal in combat is to triangle a base with birds and try to touch as many units as you can to force them to fall back or otherwise be tied up in combat. If you opponent is turtling you can actually box flying units in like Riptides in against table corners with this.

That's enough to tie things up for your Talos and Grotesques to get into combat. Shoot things that are weakened or targets of opportunity with long range firepower, but the goal is to tie them up perpetually in combat.

It's interesting. I usually use my transports for that role. Do you think that those 300ish points are worthly for that? I need to proxy them, the idea sounds fun! In fact, they're 48x2 wounds so...yeah they're kinda tanky I guess?
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Siticus the Ancient
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 09:28

I recently played against a Tau list that had 3 batallions, 3 Riptides, 3 commander suits, a Fireblade, Shadowstrider and an ethereal, with three squads of 8 shield drones and two squads of 2 shield drones. Rest was 6x5 Fire Warriors.

Really, the whole list was about survival and killing the enemy. That giant blob never really left their deployment zone so it was entirely banking on attrition.

It might sound like a broken record, but Disintegrators are the way to go when it comes to removing the Shield Drones as their 5+ fnp makes them very resilient, however due to Disintegrator's STR 5 and damage 2, the Tau player needs to roll 2 fnps for each wound and there's a lot of more of them due to wounding on 3+. Splinter fire tended to bounce off them much more.

Still, it's good to invest in some alternatives as well like outlined above with Razorwings. I would also recommend Shredder Scourges for splitting his attention in turn 2 and Mandrakes in Venoms. The -1 to hit on both Venoms and Mandrakes mean it takes a lot more shooting to take them out, and Mandrake Baleblasts are a good way to inflict some extra wounds as well.

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AzraeI
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Wed Sep 19 2018, 21:49

dont tau drones only take one mortal wound instead of the normal damage suffered?
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Shride
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Thu Sep 20 2018, 14:27

@AzraeI wrote:
dont tau drones only take one mortal wound instead of the normal damage suffered?

Only when using Saviour Protocols to tank for INFANTRY or BATTLESUIT units.  If you target the drones directly, they work like normal (though Shield Drones do get a 4++).
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Tue Sep 25 2018, 14:45

Dissies sound nice against shield drones but you can't really spam dissie shots. This is much easier with splinter shots. And Splinter rifles are great against battle suits too. What works reasonably well for me was using venoms with warriors and a blaster. This gives you lots of splinter fire and also some blasters. Nevertheless, shield drones are always a pain in the arse.

Last time I used a tantalus party bus which worked out nicely, but 600 - 700 points in one model is something I would usually avoid in competitive play.

Also rushing into melee heavily depends on the map and how good you can utilize LOS block. Are there any other feasibly tactics to bind up the tau shooting line in CC than with birds?

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lukiluck
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PostSubject: Re: How to deal with Tau at 2000 pts?   Fri Jan 18 2019, 13:48

Is the bird solution still viable after the fly nerf?
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